Alamo Drafthouse -- Village

2700 W. Anderson Lane, Austin TX 78757

At the newly renovated Alamo @drafthouse Village to see A Christmas Story

Alamo Drafthouse -- Village, aka Alamo Village, focuses on first-run movies with the occasional arthouse feature or special event. Alamo Village has 4K digital projection for all four screens, but can also show movies in 35mm. This is more of a "neighborhood theater" than the Alamo Drafthouses at Ritz or South Lamar.

Pros: Since it's an Alamo Drafthouse, you don't have to suffer through commercials before your movie. Parking is nearby. Like other Alamo Drafthouses, the theater has a serious "no talking/texting" policy during screenings. It's a good venue for film festivals if you're a local, because it almost never sells out.

Cons: This neighborhood theater gets very popular, especially nights/weekends. Buy your tickets in advance. All (non-fest) seating is reserved, so you can pick your seats online.

Screens and Capacity: Four theaters varying in size, all with Sony 4K digital but still capable of showing 35mm films. Lines for the movies may be inside the lobby or outside depending on the size of the crowds and the weather.

Parking: Alamo Village is part of a small strip mall with a parking lot. The lot gets crowded on nights and weekends (we used to tell you to drive around to the back, but the Goodnight has taken over that parking now).

Bus routes: The #5 and #19 have stops not far from the theater. You can also take a #3, but you'll have a little walk from Burnet Road.

Distance: Alamo Village is near Anderson Lane and Burnet Road, a good area for dining and shopping. It's at least 8 miles from downtown, so as a film festival venue, you can't get to downtown theaters easily -- it'll take you 15-45 minutes depending on traffic.

On-site dining options: All Alamo Drafthouses in Austin have a full menu including wine and beer. You can view the menu and current specials on the website, which also includes helpful hints on the ordering process, and information on gluten-free and vegetarian items. Don't hesitate to ask the waitstaff if you have special allergies or dietary needs.

Nearby dining options: This part of town has added lots of good dining options in the past few years. The strip mall that houses Village also includes Madam Mam's, a great Thai restaurant, Cover 3, an upscale sports bar with a fancy-ish menu, and Chen Z, where you can get house-made noodles and hot pot. Pho Thaison, in the strip mall adjacent to Village (closer to Burnet), is an inexpensive option for Vietnamese food. During the day, don't forget San Francisco Bakery, catty-corner to the theater, which has wonderful baked goods and a very tasty quiche. (It was also a location in the movie Artois the Goat.) Across the street, the Northcross shopping center offers Tarka, Elevation Burger, Phonatic and more.

And of course you can drive south on Burnet a few blocks and get a really cinematic meal at Top Notch.

Wireless: Free wireless is available in the lobby and theaters. San Francisco Bakery has wireless, and you'll find a Starbucks nearby, too, on Anderson a little closer to Mopac.

[Photo credit: "At the newly renovated Alamo Drafthouse Village" by Mike Prosser. Found on Flickr, used under Creative Commons license.]